The formula for the perfect start to your day

The formula for the perfect start to your day: Get out of bed at 7.12am, exercise for exactly 21 minutes, spend ten minutes in the shower, then take 18 minutes over breakfast

  • Four very specific instructions came from a survey of 2,000 people in the UK
  • Results analysed by Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon of the British Science Association
  • The maths whiz, who has been hosting Countdown, said: ‘This is a great tool’
  • Research paid for by cereal firm inevitably found breakfast needs plenty time

To start the day right, get out of bed at 7.12am and exercise for exactly 21 minutes.

To feel chirpy, rather than grumpy, spend ten minutes in the shower and then take 18 minutes over breakfast.

These specific instructions come from a survey of 2,000 people in the UK, with the results analysed by mathematician Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon, president-elect of the British Science Association, who devised a formula for the best morning routine.

Average answers show the optimal time in the shower is ten minutes, with people preferring eight hours in bed, waking at 6.44am, getting up at 7.12am and breakfast at 7.25am.

Dr Imafidon, who has been standing in for Rachel Riley on quiz show Countdown, said: ‘Having this formula is a great tool. A combination of the different elements should be key to getting out of bed on the right side.’

The very specific instructions were based on a survey of 2,000 Brits analysed by a maths whiz

Perhaps not surprisingly for research by a cereal firm, the formula is most influenced by how long we spend eating breakfast.

Almost two-thirds of people say this is important to set them up for the day, with 18 minutes the average time at the breakfast table.

To calculate if your routine will put you in a good mood, double the time you spend on breakfast, then add the minutes spent exercising and showering. Now work out the difference between how long you slept and the optimum eight hours – 1.5, for example, if you got six and a half hours – and the difference in hours between when you got up and 7.12am – one, if you got up at 8.12am.

The total minutes for breakfast (doubled), exercise and showering is divided by the sum based on sleeping and getting up times. Now add the minutes spent doing things such as reading the newspaper or doing a crossword, after first dividing this number by two.

The number you arrive at should be higher than 37 if you have the best morning routine.

The research, commissioned by Special K Crunchy Oat Granola, found 29 per cent of people regularly ‘wake up on the wrong side of bed’ and stay grumpy until 11am.